About Science Rendezvous
Science Rendezvous is an annual festival that takes science out of the lab and onto the street!
We work with Canada’s top research institutes to present a coast-to-coast open house and festival that is FREE for everyone. With over 300 events across 30 cities and 1000’s of mind-blowing activities, Science Rendezvous is Canada’s largest celebration of the amazing feats of science and engineering happening right here at home.
In 2017, more than 210,000 attendees participated in our unique brand of hands-on science, a new landmark for such events in Canada. Science Rendezvous is the only organization that generates this level of public engagement with science, and direct face-to-face involvement with those at the very frontiers of innovation.
This SATURDAY, MAY 12th 2018 over 6,000 of Canada’s greatest innovators, researchers, engineers, and scientists from 125 partner organizations will open their doors and close city streets to present exciting demonstrations, hands-on activities, and explosive experiments. From the physics of rock and roll to the chemistry of ice-cream, Science Rendezvous has something for everyone!
Science Rendezvous began as a joint program between the University of Toronto, Ryerson University, York University and the University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) in 2008. These founding partners saw the need to work together in order to launch an event of great enough scale and exciting content to engage the public in the vast wonders of science and engineering. Since that time, Science Rendezvous has grown to include 40 of Canada’s top research institutions and over 85 community partnerships across 30 cities in 10 provinces and 2 territories. Today, it is a marquee event and signature partner of Science Odyssey, and is the single largest science festival in Canada.
Science Rendezvous is a science outreach pioneer in Canada. Offering direct engagement with 6,000 of Canada’s top researchers and scientists at 300 simultaneous events and 1000’s of hands-on experiments for the public to try themselves.
The Science Rendezvous head office acts as an umbrella organization that coordinates the efforts of all participating institutions, reinvents public engagement with science through festival programming, and offers direction for event organizers all while promoting both the festival and Canadian science on a national level.
Science Rendezvous serves as a public platform to promote science awareness and increase science literacy in Canada. The events of the day work to engage and transform the general public from passive supporters of science and engineering to active, passionate champions with an understanding of the important role science plays in our rapidly changing world. The open-lab concept of Science Rendezvous brings science and world-leading scientists face-to-face with the public. Through thousands of hands-on science experiments, interactive lab tours, and explosive demonstrations, Science Rendezvous demonstrates how science affects our daily lives, standard of living, and global competitiveness.
By opening the doors of over $5-billion in science infrastructure to allow unprecedented public access to state-of-the-art laboratories and research facilities, Science Rendezvous offers a behind the scenes look into the career of a scientist and encourages more youth to consider science and engineering-related careers and study paths.
The importance of science to our collective future, both in terms of job creation and proper conservation of resources, should be a well-recognized concept. However, the scientific literacy rate within the general public has fallen and there is a prevailing apathy towards the sciences among youth. As a result, there has been a continuing decline of enrolment in the physical sciences and erosion of funding for basic science in Canada. Yet, research and development are vital to innovation, growth in science and technology-based industries, and good economic health.
A science-focused day, such as that offered by Science Rendezvous, makes science fun and contributes to enhancing public awareness and appreciation of what science can do.
Science Rendezvous takes this mission seriously, and measures the impact the initiative each year through attendee impact surveys. Read our report based on more than 1,200 respondents from the most recent Science Rendezvous festival here: Impact Survey – SR 2016